Joanna Ciapka-Sangster


A native of Poland, Joanna received her Masters Degree in Music Performance (1989) from the Academy of Music in Poznan, where she studied violin with Bartosz Bryla.  After graduation Joanna toured throughout Europe and Egypt performing with various Polish orchestras including: the State Philharmonic Orchestra in Poznan, Baltic State Symphony Orchestra in Gdansk, Pagart Polish Performing Arts Agency in Warsaw and Polska Filharmonia Kameralna Chamber Orchestra in Sopot. During this time she performed with such renowned conductors as Jerzy Maksymiuk, Wojciech Michniewski, Wojciech Rajski and Krzysztof Penderecki.

In 1992 Joanna  relocated to Edmonton becoming a faculty member of the Society for Talent Education and of various orchestras. Joanna joined the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra (ESO) as a core player in 1994, after winning a 1st violin chair at the international audition. In 1995, she also became a member of the Alberta Baroque Ensemble. Joanna has been a member of numerous other ensembles including: The Arden Ensemble, ECHO, Pro Coro Orchestra, the Polish Folk Arts Ensemble “Polonez” and La Belle Epoque Trio.  As a soloist, Joanna has performed with ESO, Alberta Baroque Ensemble and Concordia College Orchestra.

Her first love is playing in chamber groups and in 2005, together with her husband jazz composer and saxophonist Kent Sangster, founded the Kent Sangster’s Obsessions Octet.  Joanna also plays in the Obsessions String Quartet

Over the years, Joanna has been part of many recording projects with artists such as: Tommy Banks, P.J.Perry, Dianne Donovan, Corb Lund, Grant MacEwan Composition Department, Edmonton Composers' Concert Society, ESO and many others.

For many years she has been very active in Polish Culture Society of Edmonton (TKP).  In 2008 Joanna joined the TKP Board of Directors and in 2010 she became the Society’s President. The Society elected Joanna as the Artistic Director of the Chopin 2010 Celebration Committee in Alberta. In 2013 she has been elected by ESO musicians to join the Board of Directors of Edmonton Symphony Society and Winspear Centre for Music.

As a hobby, since 2004 Joanna has hosted Music Corner on CJSR 88.5 FM’s Polish Radio Program “Katedra Klasyki”.  She also enjoys gardening, traveling and spending time with Kent, their two kids Adam and Kaja and wonderful pets: black lab Jaxx and Maine Coon cat Bennie.